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In 2017, President Donald Trump and Republicans in Congress unsuccessfully sought to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act and switch Medicaid to a system of per capita cap financing. They may pursue such policy goals again this year. At the same time, the Trump administration has signaled a willingness to allow states to use Section 1115 waiver authority to reshape Medicaid, with several states seeking waiver provisions not previously approved by any administration, including work requirements, drug screening and testing, eligibility time limits, and premiums with disenrollment for non-payment for traditional Medicaid populations. And continuing efforts to combat the opioid epidemic are likely to focus attention on Medicaid’s role in the fight.
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The Other Implication of the CBO Report: Election-Year Pain

In this Axios column, Drew Altman lays out how the “political pain” from the American Health Care Act would play out over the next two election cycles if passed in its current form, based on the Congressional Budget Office’s analysis of the House-passed bill.

No, Medicaid Isn’t Broken

With Medicaid about to be a focal point of debate in the Senate, Drew Altman’s Axios column looks at why the idea that the program is broken is more urban legend than fact.

Proposed Medicaid Section 1115 Waivers in Maine and Wisconsin

While the future of legislation to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and make fundamental changes to the structure and funding of the Medicaid program is uncertain, states and the Administration may achieve major changes to Medicaid through the use of Section 1115 Medicaid waivers. Wisconsin submitted a waiver amendment request to CMS in June 2017 and Maine submitted a waiver application to CMS in August 2017. Unlike previous waivers that encompass the ACA’s Medicaid expansion, Wisconsin and Maine are seeking waiver authority to make significant changes to Medicaid that would affect non-expansion Medicaid populations.

State Variation in Medicaid Per Enrollee Spending for Seniors and People with Disabilities

This issue brief explains the variation in Medicaid spending per enrollee for seniors, nonelderly adults with disabilities, and children with disabilities compared to other populations as well as the variation in per enrollee spending for these populations among states. It also provides a snapshot of state choices about optional eligibility pathways and services important to many seniors and people with disabilities.

Don’t Expect Medicaid Work Requirements to Make a Big Difference

Under the Trump Administration, some Republican governors may look to move their Medicaid programs in a more conservative direction. In his latest column for Axios, Drew Altman discusses the arguments about Medicaid “work requirements” and why few people are likely to be affected by them in practice.

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.